The Buddha’s Discourse on Defending Democracy

The Death (parinirvana) of the Buddha, c.AD 20. Grey schist from ancient Gandhara. The Victoria and Albert Museum, London. At a time when many democracies are being undermined at home by corrupt politicians or threatened externally by would-be totalitarian regimes, perhaps a discourse the Buddha gave before his great passing, his mahaparinirvana, might provide an …

OCEAN OF IGNORANCE

Making Sense of Samdhong Rinpoche’s Views on Modern Science In January this year at the 106th Indian Science Congress (inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi) the head of a South Indian university cited an old Hindu text as proof that stem cell research was discovered in India thousands of years ago. The vice chancellor of …

Misrepresenting My Audience (of May 2018) with the Dalai Lama.

Recently in a video interview with Voice of Tibet, a staff member of the Dalai Lama’s Private Office, Ngaba Tsegyam-la, claimed I had misrepresented the Dalai Lama’s statements in an audience I was granted last year; that I had claimed the Dalai had said “struggle for independence” (rangzen tso-sho) and that the Middle Way policy …

Extinguishing the Embers of Freedom (Part 1)

The Legacy of the former “Enthroned” Prime Minister, His Eminence, Professor Samdhong Rinpoche. Tibetan historians have used the figurative expression “nurturing the embers of the dharma” (tempae mero solwa) to describe how such dedicated scholars and teachers as Lotsawa Rinchen Sangpo, Lekpe Sherap, Drom Tonpa, and the great Bengali spiritual master, Atisa, labored tirelessly to keep Buddhist teachings alive …